AINSWORTH - Jeff Freyenberger may not have been there for the Dairy Mart’s grand opening in 1954, but he was the one to open the doors for its 65th season which began last week. Current owner Jeff Freyenberger is the fourth owner of the establishment after inheriting it from his parents.
The Dairy Mart, in Ainsworth, was first opened in 1954 by Howard and Myrtle Beenblossom. Twelve years later the establishment was sold to Burke and Helen McCreedy, who built a home in Ainsworth. In 1976 the McCreedys sold the shop to Wayne and Ann Freyenberger. Wayne previously managed a Dairy Queen in Illinois and wanted to purchase a franchise of his own when family members in the area encouraged him to purchase the Dairy Mart instead.
“He wanted to be back here to be closer to family,” Freyenberger said. Once it was time for his dad to pass down the business, Freyenberger was the obvious choice after his siblings moved away and he was the only one in the area.
He said working at the shop from April to October presents its own unique challenge, but he enjoys being able to be his own boss for part of the year before taking on his winter job. He said the best part of being in the ice cream business is all the unique people he meets.
“It’s been around and we get people in about 30 miles in any direction,” he said. “A lot of people stop off and spend time here.”